Other species of social caterpillars

caterpillars on  tree caterpillars on tree
closeup caterpillars

Pachymeta robusta Aurivillius (Lasiocampidae), the Msasa Worm. Photographed on their host plant, the Msasa Tree (Brachystegia spiciformis).  Larva feed at night and cluster by day.   Thanks to Ric Piegler for help in identifying these caterpillars and to Shepherd Mutyora for the photographs.


         Above and right:  "Bag-shelters" of Australian processionary caterpillars.
       Although a single species Ochrogaster lunifer has been indentified, differences in
       nesting habits and behavior indicate that there are at least
two species.
       Photographs courtesy of Peter Hill. 



An unidentified species of processionary observed at Tapanti National Park, Costa Rica, in  late April.  Photographs courtesy of Kenji Nishida and Mr. Hotta.

caterpillars on leaf caterpillars caterpillar group
Larvae of  Callosamia promethea.  Prelimary observations indicate that the early instars desposit and follow trails that facilitate aggregation.

caterpillar nest
The nest of a caterpillar identified as Eutolype sp. (Lasiocampidae) observed at La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica.  Nothing is known of its behavior.
 ( From: http://www.tulane.edu/~ldyer/lsacat/index_frames.htm)


A social species, possible the early instar of Ammalo helops (Arctiidae) .  These were photographed on Ficus near Chamela, Mexico.

The larvae and nest of the cherry web-spinning sawfly Neurotoma fasciata on Prunus serotinaPhotographed in Cortland, NY
sawfly larvae sawfly nest


Left, an unidentified caterpillar photographed near Tepic, Mexico.

Two North American species of social caterpillars whose larvae lay down and follow trails that serve to keep the caterpillars together as they move about the host. (Left) larvae of the brown trail moth, Euproctis chrysorrhoea (Lymantriidae). (Right) Hemileuca maia (Saturniidae), the larvae of which are processionaries. small caterpillars
euproctis caterpillars

caterpillar aggregate
caterpillars feeding
caterpillar procession

Above: (Left) Second instar larvae of the processionary Euselasia chrysippe (Riodinidae), (Center) Fourth instars, and (Right and Below) Sixth instars.  The larvae feed on Miconia calvescens in Costa Rica.  Photos courtesy of  Kenji Nishida and the Miconia project by the Institute of Pacific Islands Forestry, USDA Forest Service-University of Costa Rica

caterpillars moving fungus gnat larvae
An unusual mode of mass locomotion exhibited by the hymenopteran Perreyia sp.  The caterpillars feed on leaf litter on the ground.  Photographed by J. Mackin along the Shiripuno River near Coca, Ecuador, August, 2007.  En masse movement of fungus gnat larvae. Photographed near Fairbanks, Alaska, July 2007.   Image by Daniel L. Osborne.

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